LORI FRANCIS CHATS WITH DWIGHT…
My second interview with Lori Francis…Harley Davidson 'Screamin Eagle' Motorcycle Drag Racer was far better than the first…only because I had more time to talk to her. I'm Dwight, and I'm fortunate to be able to ask questions of racers. During this interview, when I asked Lori Francis whom in history she would most want to have lunch with…she said Einstein. My interviews are net-friendly, not etched in stone or burn on paper. After some thought Lori e-mailed me to let me know she wanted to change her choice from Einstein to Janis Joplin because… "Janis was an individual, and she stood out in a crowd of a mainly male-dominated industry."
Einstein…Janis Joplin…We're in special territory here. So let's all try to take the theory of relativity… add…'a little piece of my heart.'…then proceed. We're going a little closer to Lori Francis. Whenever I get close to Lori and get a chance to photograph her, and she's aware of the process, I get the best photo I'm going to get for the next roll (or on digital, the next megabyte). Zoom in on Lori Francis sitting on a Harley Davidson, under a bright sun, on hot asphalt, waiting for the next run…watch Lori light up! Take a moment to sit in our chat…a chat in the shade. Watch Lori light up! Listen and see Lori Francis who without moving, with one smile, can outshine a light bulb.
D-O-B: Aug 3, 1961 BirthTown: St. Louis, Missouri
Hometown: St.Louis, Missouri
Before I proceed with my questions, let me describe a behind-the-scene event. Lori responded to my impromptu statement when I (politely) invaded her racing realm, about how relaxed she looked sitting under her awning reading a trade magazine.
Do you have a nickname?
"I don't think I do. I can always acquire one."
Who would you most like to be like?
"Not anyone person. I 'd like to take the best qualities out of a handful of people, and put those into one person."
Who are your Heroes?
"My dad. He raced Harleys."
What are your scariest moments?
"Crosswinds are terrible. I'm too light."
Do you work out?
"Yes, I do. Couple of times a week on my upper body."
Do you have a special diet?
"Junk food. Sweets."
What mental routine prepares you for each run?
"I go through my entire run couple of times. From the fire up to the finish line."
Do you have time for a hobby?
"Softball. And I'm a Soccer Mom. I have three kids, a boy and two girls. 14, 15, and 16."
Many motorcyclists ride to unravel, what do you do to unwind?
"I don't believe I do unwind."
What personal quality (one trait) would you want your fans to admire most?
"A normal American girl, a person."
What's most important?
1.Fame 2.Money 3.Thrill/fun 4.Winning
"Thrill and the fun and winning!"
Are you happy?
What could make you happier?
"Ride a perfect race."
If you could change one thing about motorcycle drag racing, what would it be?
"I don't know."
When driving a car, do you always wear a seatbelt?
1. Yes. 2. No. 3. Sometimes?
Where do you find the most peace in your life?
"Peace is at home with my family, my kids. My safe haven in my house."
When do you find the most peace in your life?
"Every night after Ten PM."
Do you have a full-time occupation?
"I assemble motorcycle wheels for an after-market firm."
You're a skilled racer…What one factor separates you from the fast traffic on public highways?
"I hate speeding tickets."
What does 175 miles per hour feel like?
"Actually everything is going in slow motion. It's just you and the bike. You can't see anything else. You and the bike become one. You're all by yourself, and your thought processes go slow. You think about a lot of things. It's an adrenaline pump, so you thin in slow motion."
Do you believe weight is a factor in motorcycle drag racing?
"Yes. A major factor."
When asleep do you ever dream you're riding a motorcycle?
What got you started in motorcycle drag racing?
"Born and raised in the environment."
When not wearing leathers or racing garb, what's your choice for clothing?
"Blue jeans, T-shirts, sweat shirts. The feel of cotton!"
Name one other sport, you believe you could excel at?"
If you could make one part of your body stronger, what part would that be?
"My mind. If your mind is strong everything else follows."
When frustrated. What do you do first?
1.Erupt. 2.Withdraw 3. Try to be cool.
"I don't get upset. I stay calm."
Are you the excitable type, the kind who on occasion jumps up and down?
If so, what causes you to jump up and down?
"I'm a very energetic person. Hyperactive."
Besides where you live, as an extensive traveler, where in the US would you move?
"I love Colorado. It's my favorite part of the country."
What job, other than racing, would you most like to do?
"Something to do with competition. Coaching. Anything competitive."
What makes you laugh the deepest?
"My nerves. When I get nervous, I crack up."
What do you worry about the most?
"I have stress-free life. I'm very comfortable at home. I like being a mom. I don't worry about my kids because they are all good kids."
Do you have pets?
"A cat and a dog. They get along. The American dream. My daughter wants a duck."
If you could have lunch with anybody in history…Whom would you munch with?
"Janis Joplin. Because she was an individual, and she stood out in a crowd of a mainly male-dominated industry."
"I feel honored that they (Harley Davidson Screamin Eagle team) chose me to ride for them. I'm going to do the best job I can."
Harley Davidson Screamin Eagle driver Lori Francis stands out in her own way. She seeks speed while hoping for her own Harley City. It's hard not to admire those aspirations. At the end of the last interview I chose a word for Lori which I felt described her character. It's a word that accents her fine mix of humility and determination. That word is still appropriate. Gary agreed…Lori Francis is…